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¡Presente!

Saturday
Oct 21st
Simón Sedillo PDF Print E-mail
Simón P. Sedillo created the image of Tonantzin that was used as the cover image of the Summer '08 issue of Presente.

In Aztec mythology, Tonantzin is a mother goddess and lunar deity. Some anthropologists believe that Our Lady of Guadalupe (an indigenous manifestation of Christ's mother Mary and patroness of Roman Catholic Mexico) is a syncretic and "Christianized" Tonantzin. Mexico City's 17th-century Basilica of Guadalupe -- built in honor of the virgin and perhaps Mexico's most important religious building--was constructed at the base of the hill of Tepeyac, believed to be a site used for pre-Columbian worship of Tonantzin.

Among the titles and honorifics bestowed upon Tonantzin are "Goddess of Sustenance", "Honored Grandmother", "Snake", "Bringer of Maize" and "Mother of the Corn". Other indigenous names for her include Chicomexochitl ("Seven Flowers") and Chalchiuhcihuatl ("Woman of Precious Stone"). Tonantzin is honored during the movable feast of Xochilhuitl.

The goddess Tonantzin shares characteristics with similar Mesoamerican divinities Cihuacoatl and Coatlicue, all of whom may have been drawn from common origins.

Tonantzin
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